REDMOND, Wa. — April 10, 1995 — Microsoft today announced the release of Joe-Bob™, a new software package that the company hopes will open up a huge untapped computer market. With the motto “The software for the rest of y’all™,” Joe-Bob reaches out to the same demographic group that buys 4x4s, supports the gun lobby, and drinks Miller Lite.
“Computers have been commonly seen as for leftists and intellectuals,” explains Microsoft spokesperson Willy Maclean, “but we’ve recently seen people like Newt Gingrinch embracing new technology — the time is right for the rest of America to get wired!”
Instead of a desktop or office metaphor, Joe-Bob(tm) puts the user in a garage. “Click on the Lynyrd Skynyrd tapes, and get a complete music library in digital stereo. Click on the pinups, and get hooked up to the Internet’s hottest gifs,” the promotional materials explain.
The package does not include a word processor or spreadsheet, but does have software that keeps track of the football season, lists the best roadhouses between Florida and Nevada, and can even order spareribs and beer at the click of a mouse.
“This is righteous software, man,” says beta-tester Billy Grugg. “It thinks like I think.” Brad Cunningham agrees: “I take it everywhere,” he says, pointing to a Pentium laptop racked under his 12- gauge in his pickup truck. Microsoft is offering desktop users a special clip-on beer holder for their monitors.
“Look at what’s popular out there,” says Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates. “Four of the top-10 Usenet newsgroups are about sex, and splatter video games like Doom and Mortal Kombat are bestsellers. We’re just catering to a demand, that’s all.”
Microsoft is reportedly distributing badges and bumper stickers saying things like “Joe-Bob: Make Your Disk Hard,” “Go Microsoft — Go Intel — Go America,” and “QuickTime is for Pinko Hippie Wimps.”
Apple declined to comment.